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The breakdown: three local ballot measures explained

Two city-level measures on the ballot in Richmond propose to raise taxes for programs to support kids, the homeless and affordable housing. A third measure would tax marijuana cultivators to raise money for the county’s general use. Election day is Tuesday, November 6, 2018. To help you make an informed decision at the voting booth, we’re explaining the three ballot measures in this story. (Click here to check if you’re registered to vote.) Below is an overview of Measure H,…

Richmond’s homeless community hangs on as Prop 2 promises limited new funding

At the corner of 22nd Street and Carlson Boulevard in Richmond sits a homeless encampment where the unofficial mayor, Oretha “Porkchop” Stevens, is calming down her next-door neighbor Tone. His phone is missing and Porkchop works to reassure him.  “You’re not crazy, you know where you put your stuff! Don’t play with your own mind,” she says with authority, perched on the bed inside her tent from where she presides all day over her dozen neighbors’ lives. She and her…

Calling it a ‘sick pig,’ residents urge reopening of Point Molate settlement

Audible gasps spread through the Richmond City Council meeting on Tuesday when it was announced that nearly 50 people had signed up to speak during the public comment period, most about the city’s most valuable piece of shoreline that is once again the subject of tense debate. The gasps foreshadowed some colorful comments from the residents who blasted city officials about how they approved a settlement agreement for the prized shoreline, known as Point Molate. Richmond resident Juan Reardon denounced…

Mayor promises long-term homeless plan, but surprise evictions of Richmond’s homeless continue

As city workers continue to uproot the homeless from encampments around Richmond, at times without any warning or help, Mayor Tom Butt is pushing to raise $1.5 million from local companies to pay for a managed homeless encampment. He has asked several local companies, including Chevron Corporation, Kaiser Permanente, Blue Apron, Costco Wholesale and Sims Metal Management to donate $154,000 each—to build and run a camp serving 100 people for a year. As a group of homeless people were being…

Proposed housing developments promise to transform downtown Richmond

A series of recently proposed housing developments along Macdonald Avenue in downtown Richmond could spur a business renaissance in the struggling district if city and local business leaders’ predictions ring true. In a city desperate for affordable housing, the developments reserve only about one quarter of the total number of units for residents making below the median income. The rest of the apartments would be rented at market rates. Still, Richmond leaders are supporting the proposals on land that has…

Residents of Richmond public housing live in fear, demand action to address poor conditions

Her family dialed 911. But when paramedics reached the seven-story affordable housing development, they found its elevators malfunctioning yet again. In fact, the elevators at this federally funded housing development had not been working for one week, residents say, and they often break down. The building houses some of the city’s most vulnerable residents — low-income seniors and people with disabilities.

North Richmond Annexation

North Richmond is an unincorporated community in West Contra Costa County and is almost completely surrounded by the City of Richmond. The idea of annexation, or integration, of North Richmond into the city has been raised for decades. In 2017, it came up once more and residents are currently discussing the possibility.

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